National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), USA
Dr. Phillipy is an investigator in the Computational and Statistical Genomics branch of NHGRI at the National Institute of Health. He began his career at The Institute for Genomic Research in 2001, followed by graduate studies at the University of Maryland starting in 2005. After receiving his PhD in 2010, he started a research group at the National Bioforensic Analysis Center, and later moved to the National Human Genome Research Institute in 2015 to form the Genome Informatics Section. He has made foundational contributions to bioinformatics, specifically in the areas of genome alignment, genome assembly, and microbial forensics. Most recently, he has pioneered the use of single-molecule and nanopore sequencing for the accurate reconstruction of complete genomes at low cost.
University of California San Diego, USA
Dr. Gymrek is an Assistant Professor in Medicine and Computer Science at University of California, San Diego. Before joining UC San Diego, Gymrek was a postdoctoral researcher in the Analytical and Translational Genetics Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital and the Broad Institute. She earned a Ph.D. in bioinformatics and integrative genomics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, as well as a bachelor’s in computer science and mathematics from MIT. Dr. Gymrek’s research area is studying genetic variation in humans. Much of her work focuses specifically on genetic variation at short tandem repeats, also known as microsatellites, and how these and other complex types of variation can affect human traits. She developed an algorithm, lobSTR, to profile variation at these loci from high throughput sequencing data. This tool allows us for the first time to answer many questions regarding properties of these loci on a genome-wide and population-wide scale.